The Care Economy


Care Xchange - Staff Share

Creating increased care capacity enabling providers to share staff and increasing care workers’ earning potential.

Team Lead

Jonathan Key

Solution Overview & Team Lead Details

Our Organization

Labour xchange Ltd

What is the name of your solution?

Care Xchange - Staff Share

Provide a one-line summary of your solution.

Increasing care capacity by enabling providers to share staff, balancing supply and demand whilst increasing care worker earning potential

Film your elevator pitch.

What specific problem are you solving?

The UK has an approximate shortage of 150K care workers. This leaves vulnerable individuals unable to access care and care providers unable to accept new clients.

This shortage is impacting the wider health system as some patients, who are fit to leave hospital, are unable to be discharged back into their local community due to the local authorities inability to provide them appropriate care. This creates a scenario wherein it is unsafe for hospitals to discharge patients – a term commonly called “bed blocking” and recognised by the NHS as “Delayed Transfer of Care” (DTOC). The official figure of DTOCs for February 2020 in England was 155,717 with an average of 5,370 delays per day.

Despite substantial efforts from both local and central government, there is an inability to convince enough individuals to start a career within care. This lack of capacity is having a devastating knock on effect on individuals in need of carers. The care sector within the UK is economically mixed – with many private providers, council provision, informal arrangements ETC. In addition, care can be administered in a wide variety of settings such as care homes and private residences by live-in carers or carer visits. Given this fragmented system of care, many providers have different staffing demands. For example; a domiciliary care agency will need staff at different timeframes to a care home and vice versa. This can lead to situations wherein a care worker is underutilised, as their direct employer may have their establishment overstaffed at certain times (calculating shift patterns on weighted averages) to ensure “peak hours” are sufficiently covered. This creates an oxymoronic situation in which there is an excess of staffing capacity at a business level and a shortage of staffing capacity at a national level.

What is your solution?

Staff Share – a component of Care Xchange – is a platform with which care providers, in a given region, can share staff members with one another, balancing out internal staff supply and demand fluctuations.  

Working with local authorities, Care Xchange will provide Staff Share to local care providers to sign up to, creating an overall carer workforce on a shared local agreement. This agreement is based on an existing one used by NHS organisations and provides a legal framework for companies to share one another’s staff.  

Each care provider is then issued an account on the platform. From here, they can enrol their eligible staff members on to the system. Each member of staff that enrols can then advise their availability for the coming week, based on their pre-determined working rota, choosing which days, and specifically which hours, they would like to work additionally.  

Another local care provider, within the local authority catchment area, can then use the Care Xchange Staff Share platform to find qualified enrolled members to meet its staffing needs on a daily or hourly basis. The system will filter the most applicable individuals to fit the needs of the provider and book them at the click of a button. The system then automates communications between the individual and the provider to confirm details and booking arrangements.


The Care Xchange Staff Share platform introduces a new model of collaboration into the care industry to maximise the existing, scarce carer resource by having the ability to focus accommodations down to an hourly basis, provide additional working hours to carers and fill gaps on a need-to-staff basis.  

The platform also has the built-in ability to share documentation between providers – mitigating any legislative risks when using Staff Share. For example: documentation of the carer looking to utilise Staff Share will have their details readily available to every provider enrolled. To this end they have all information available to them to make a final decision – eliminating any potential discrepancies or “risk” when sharing staff members.

Who does your solution serve, and in what ways will the solution impact their lives?

We serve 4 target groups:

1)Care providing organisations –

By providing a means for care providing organisations to share staff, and balance out their staffing demands, we enable:

A – Access to additional staffing resources - both swiftly and economically.

B – Improved morale across the organisation via the ensured means of desired earning capacity.

C – Growth of the organisation on the basis of adaptability to supply and demand, enabling the organisation to accept new clients.

2)Care workers –

By enabling the care worker the ability to set and choose when and where they would like to complete additional hours, outside of their rota shifts, we are able to greatly increase the income of said care worker.

3)Individuals requiring care –

There are substantial backlogs of people requiring care. They are often unable to receive the care they require due to their care provider having limited capacity. Increasing the pre-existing care capacity of the care provider via Staff Share will help individuals access the care they require when required.

4)Local authorities –

Local authorities are reliant on care providers. If care providers do not have the necessary capacity to meet requirements, local authorities are unable to meet their statutory requirements in care provision. Working with local authorities, the Care Xchange Staff Share platform can increase the capacity of all enrolled providers and ensure all care workers enrolled obtain their desired working hours.  

In an average sized local authority, Staff Share can increase the capacity of care worker hours by 72,000 per annum. This is enough hours to provide domiciliary care to an additional 100 vulnerable individuals per week.  

In addition to this; as our fees are low, in comparison to job agencies that are often utilised, local authorities are able to re-invest their savings back into the care sector as a whole.

How are you and your team well-positioned to deliver this solution?

The original Labour Xchange platform was developed in 2018 in conjunction with one of the UK’s leading trade unions. The Labour Xchange team are individuals with true experience of the issues we are trying to tackle. Our original platform was designed and built to connect individuals looking for part-time work opportunities that could fit around their personal circumstances, such as being a single parent or an individual with a zero-hour contract, with local businesses needing to fill staffing gaps. The platform was designed to be as simple to use as possible to accommodate all users – specifically those that are not tech-savvy or that struggle with limited English, a result of our user research reflecting that 23% of users were over the age of 58 at time of investigation.  

In 2020 Labour Xchange entered into a partnership with two English local authorities to develop the platform further, and make it more accessible for individuals to find carers on our platform (Direct Payments). Labour Xchange held workshops with the local authority care providers and platform users to explore the platforms applicability to the care sector.

In November of 2021, Labour Xchange was requested by our partnered local authorities to explore and find further ways to develop our platform to cater the needs of their care sectors. Working in conjunction with the local authority care providers, individual care workers and members of the local authorities themselves; the platform was reworked and redeployed as the Care Xchange Staff Share platform

At every stage of development, our platform has been co-designed with community groups, individual users and industry leaders. Each iteration or our platform supports the next.

The original Labour Xchange platform, still active to this day, was co-designed with Community Trade Unions Ltd. To ensure an all ethical approach to earn additional income and aid local businesses. The Care Xchange platform has been co-designed with the local authorities, care providers and care workers to guarantee it meets the requirements of even the most vulnerable user.

The CEO of Labour Xchange is also disabled and is an infrequent care user.

Which dimension of the Challenge does your solution most closely address?

Enabling new models for childcare or eldercare that improve affordability, convenience, or community trust.

Where our solution team is headquartered or located:

Southend-on-Sea, UK

Our solution's stage of development:


How many people does your solution currently serve?


Why are you applying to Solve?

The team working at Labour Xchange are genuinely passionate about our social mission and the unique platform with which we drive it. This culture of authenticity greatly improves the volume, quality and care of platform applications. Our working-class background enables us the insights of the needs of working individuals, especially those finding themselves at a disadvantage - physical, mental or otherwise.

We are sensitive to working practises that are in place to exploit individuals within the working world. We have partnered with Community Trade Unions Ltd. To ensure these practises never become a part of the Labour Xchange ethos.

Whilst our teams varied background has enabled us to develop this unique platform, we would very much like to collaborate with Solve. We do not have access to such resources as Solve’s mentoring programme and would find such a thing invaluable. We also do not have the strongest academic background or links to the funding industry due the diverse and working-class nature of our founding team.

We’re the friendly, pub-going, working-class drones and proud of it! However, we understand that due to this we aren’t exactly the “sexiest” or “coolest” of people and this can be troublesome when trying to garner more widespread media coverage and recognition.

Becoming a “Solver” is extremely important to all of us at Labour Xchange. It would bridge the connections gap we experience due to our backgrounds and help us get a footing in circles outside of our own. Although we have gained significant interests from many local authorities and experienced organic traction through hard work, the boost in exposure from becoming a “Solver” team would enable us to, ultimately, roll out Care Xchange- Staff share internationally with substantially less friction. Our primary goals from becoming a “Solver” team would be to access the mentoring system, additional publicity and a pathway to finding funders that believe in our social mission.

In which of the following areas do you most need partners or support?

Public Relations (e.g. branding/marketing strategy, social and global media)

Who is the Team Lead for your solution?

Jonathan Key

More About Your Solution

What makes your solution innovative?

Our solution has 3 key innovative features:  

First and foremost, we are aiming to change competitive environments into collaborative environments. On Care Xchange’s Staff Share, care providers have been able to collaborate with one another in regards to increasing and sharing capacity within their respective operations.  

However, within the UK care industry care providers must compete against one another for staff, and as most staffing costs are fixed (usually at minimum wage) they are unable to compete with others within the care provider sector such as private providers or privately owned care homes.  

Many providers within the domiciliary care industry also waste significant amounts of staff time through travel between clients. We have had conversations with one such provider that spoke of a staff member traveling up to 70 miles between clients. Such practises cause a substantial waste of resources – particularly due to the fact that there is likely another carer within the clients local area and making use of them would mitigate the travel time and costs. However, as they work for another provider, they are unable to accommodate.   

Enabling cooperation via Staff Share, each care provider will be able to fully utilise their staff in the most optimal way possible and ensure all of their staff get their desired working hours.  

The second, and more technical of our innovations, is our specially made algorithm that concentrates on hourly availability and matching that availability with local businesses needs. To this end, we can ensure care workers can freely utilise their free or spare time and care providers can access a significantly powerful new resource.  

The third, and most embedded feature, is our commitment and focus of the wellbeing of the individual. At every stage of the development of Labour Xchange, we have focused on providing genuine support for the worker. This attitude has extended to our Staff Share platform as well and as such we have numerous wellbeing safeguards in place as well as an optional upskilling portal for individuals.

What are your impact goals for the next year and the next five years, and how will you achieve them?

Care Xchange and the Staff Share platform has one easily measured impact goal:  

We can determine the volume of hours booked via Staff Share,every hour booked is a new hour of work created.

Therefore we are able to convert this metric into two key impact goals measurements:  

  • Every hour of created work is an additional hour that an individual is receiving care that they need.
  • Every hour of created work booked via Staff Share represents an hour of additional income . 

With this information we can measure the capacity and income of care workers.  


Our long-term impact goals for the close of 2024 are as follows:  

  • Increase in care capacity by 2,520,000 hours per year which is the equivalent of another 620,000 care visits per year, or 11,200 vulnerable people able to receive care who otherwise would not have.
  • Increase care workers income by £26 million through extra hours worked on the platform


How are you measuring your progress toward your impact goals?

The Care Xchange Staff Share platform automatically updates additional hours that are worked via their user account. These additional hours exist outside of their working rota and therefore are always confirmed as additional. To this end we can determine the additional income being generated via Staff Share. All users must set their preferred hourly rate and is agreed upon when a care provider employs them. All of this information is logged and saved by our platform for analysis and research.  

We also measure the skills that the majority of care providers are looking to employ via the use of user profiles. Users do not manually write their skill list – instead they use a series of dropdown menus that our system can then collect a pool of data from. This enables us to determine which core training packages to look at providing in future to benefit the care sector.  

Last but not least, we also employ a rating system to monitor the quality of care provided.

What is your theory of change?

Our theory of change is the elimination of unhealthy competition via the implementation of healthy collaboration.

Within the current environment of care providers competing for staff on cost, the quality and volume of service will continue to decline. By enabling care providers the use of Staff Share, we aim to effectively:

  • Increase quality of practise – As care workers operate for different care providers, they will gain exposure to a wider variation of different levels of standards. This will enable all care workers to pass on their experiences from “higher level” care providers to their primary employee.
  • A greater appreciation of ones self-worth – By working at a wider array of locations, care workers will experience a greater appreciation of their skillset, both from within and without themselves.
  • A care service user approach – By effectively eliminating staffing as one of the hurdles to the care providers, priority will be able to shift towards the needs of the care service user instead of care provider constraints and capacity.
  • Home grown care – Eventually, by encouraging care providers and care workers to come together, we envisage a care sector wherein care workers are kept local and care providers are always at high capacity. This will result in greater efficiency and a better quality across the care sector.     

The long-term end-goal of our model is a unified and collaborative care sector across the UK that puts the needs of the care user before costs, staffing issues or internal politics wherein care workers are happier, and thus more productive and invested in care user needs. Within the same vein, care providers will be able to maintain a higher base standard of quality across the sector, leading to an overall more beneficial system for care users. 

Another long-term goal will be for our Labour Xchange platform to revolutionise the way all sectors of industry staff their businesses; to broadly have collaboration adopted over unhealthy competition.

Describe the core technology that powers your solution.

The technology that powers our solution are:

Labour Xchange – Our original, in-house designed and engineered platform that enables individuals to find ad hoc working opportunities that suit their time requirements, and takes into account individuals differing lifestyles. The platform has an advanced algorithm that matches individuals with businesses based on locality, type of work, skillset and hourly rate.

Care Xchange – The successor, and hopefully first of many offshoots, to Labour Xchange. Created in partnership with two local authorities and based on the Labour Xchange system, Care Xchange has the additional legalities associated with the NHS sharing staff built in, as well as training packages to encourage more individuals to venture into the care sector of work.

Staff Share – A revolutionary piece of software that uses our advanced algorithm to facilitate an hourly basis of employment and income across the Care Xchange platform.

Workforce Sharing Agreement – The legal framework that facilitates the sharing of staff among care providers.

Which of the following categories best describes your solution?

A new technology

How do you know that this technology works?

Staff share is an iteration of the above platforms that are already tested and working.

Please select the technologies currently used in your solution:

  • Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning
  • Behavioral Technology
  • Big Data

Which of the UN Sustainable Development Goals does your solution address?

  • 1. No Poverty
  • 2. Zero Hunger
  • 5. Gender Equality
  • 8. Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • 9. Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • 10. Reduced Inequalities
  • 11. Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • 12. Responsible Consumption and Production
  • 16. Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions
  • 17. Partnerships for the Goals
Your Team

What type of organization is your solution team?

For-profit, including B-Corp or similar models

How many people work on your solution team?


How long have you been working on your solution?

3 years

What is your approach to incorporating diversity, equity, and inclusivity into your work?

We have a focus on the most marginalised groups, our target KPIs are:

80% of all staff are to be non university educated. As ours is a solution for blue colalr working class people it is important our team represents this marginalised group.

50% of new team recruits must have been long term unemployed.

This approach ensures our reach and help is greatest to those who need it the most, regardless of sex,race or religion.

Your Business Model & Funding

What is your business model?

Our business has three core propositions, each with an individual business model. However all elements overlap which enables us to have a deep social impact on multiple fronts.  

Labour xchange – For each individual match to work, there is a charge to the business of £10 per adhoc piece of work or £150 for a permanent hire. This pricing model encourages business to permanently hire and improves individuals career prospects, our impact goals are increased income for individuals and better long term career prospects.  

Care xchange – Onboards and trains people in the care industry. For every direct hire there is a charge of £250. This models aim is increase the skills and employability of the users and increase the overall care staff captivity.  

Care xchange/Staff share – The local authority pays a license fee for the use of the platform by all the care providers in the local area. The impact goals is to increase the earning potential of care workers and to increase the overall capacity of care workers.

Do you primarily provide products or services directly to individuals, to other organizations, or to the government?

Government (B2G)

What is your plan for becoming financially sustainable?

Our business has three core propositions, each with an individual business model. However all elements overlap which enables us to have a deep social impact on multiple fronts.  

Labour xchange – For each individual match to work, there is a charge to the business of £10 per adhoc piece of work or £150 for a permanent hire. This pricing model encourages business to permanently hire and improves individuals career prospects, our impact goals are increased income for individuals and better long term career prospects.  

Care xchange – Onboards and trains people in the care industry. For every direct hire there is a charge of £250. This models aim is increase the skills and employability of the users and increase the overall care staff captivity.  

Care xchange/Staff share – The local authority pays a license fee for the use of the platform by all the care providers in the local area. The impact goals is to increase the earning potential of care workers and to increase the overall capacity of care workers.

Share some examples of how your plan to achieve financial sustainability has been successful so far.

We have paying customers for all the aspects of the business proving the models.

We have sold two staff share licenses already and have another 8 local authorities in the sales pipline.

We have received funding from:

  • Resolution trust
  • Innovate UK
  • Community trade union
  • BGV

Solution Team

  • Mr Jonathan Key Co-Founder, Labour xchange
to Top